Needs Versus Wants:
10 Ways to Make a Budget Work

The needs versus wants line is often blurred and can sometimes be difficult to draw. Whether you are limited by ways to make budget work that may hinder you from getting what you want, or you simply can't seem to be satisfied with what you already have, there must be a balance. Unfortunately, finding that balance can be difficult.

The following are 10 ways for making a budget work successfully while all the while creating a balance between what you need and what you want.

    1. Realize that needs should always come first. Are you guilty of putting your wants before your needs? The first step in creating a balance is realizing that both you and your family's needs must be put ahead of what you want. Don't sacrifice your health or the well being of your family to get what you want.

    2. Define what's important to you. When attempting to create a balance, you must define what is important to you. Prioritizing your needs versus wants will help you from being overwhelmed. If your wants are more important to you than your needs, take a step back and rethink what's important to you.

    3. Analyze why you really want it. Sometimes, analyzing why you want a certain thing can help shed light on the situation. Make a list of why you want the item. If the list seems overwhelmingly selfish, then choose not to get it.

    4. Don't fall for fads. Realize that fads will go out of style. If you can't afford the latest fad, don't stress over it. You will be glad that you didn't make the purchase when the fad begins to fade.

    5. Rewarding yourself is okay but don't go overboard. Giving in every now and then is okay. However, balance will not be maintained if you go overboard with the purchases. Choose to make a purchase once a month for yourself instead of every day. This will help create a balance.

    6. If you can shrug it off, it is a want. Some people have trouble creating a balance between needs versus wants because they are unaware of exactly what a want is. As a rule of thumb, a want is something that you can shrug off. A need on the other hand, is a necessity for life such as food, water, housing, etc.

    7. When making a budget, includes both needs and wants. Creating a balance also involves setting down realistic ways to make a budget work. Sit down at the beginning of each month and balance your checkbook, pay your bills and use whatever you have left over for your wants. If there is nothing less over, there is always next month!

    8. Going into to debt to get what you want is NOT creating a balance. Stay away from buying your wants on credit. If you don't have the money, refuse to buy it. This will help you avoid mounds of debt that can accumulate from buying wants.

    9. Before making a large purchase, wait a while. Chances are the wants will pass. Regardless of how much you desire a particular thing, choose to wait a while before you run out and make the purchase. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to change your mind. This will not only save your money, it will make you realize that wants change constantly.

    10. Strive to always keep a balance. If finding and maintaining a balance between your needs versus wants is important to you, make this a part of your agenda daily. While it is okay to give in to your wants every now and then, your needs should always be priority. Realize that wanting new and better things is a fact of life. However, there must be a balance.

Use the 10 tips above to help you achieve balance in your life. If you can't seem to overcome your desire for the things you want, consider getting a second job to help pay for them. You may quickly see that getting the things you want in life isn't nearly as important as you thought it was.

Which ways to make a budget work will you choose to create a balance between your needs versus wants?

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This guest article is by Marina Chernyak who writes for 1001Shop, a leading group of home decor products such as artificial silk plants, tiffany lamps, and etageres.

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